BOGLE PHANTOM - 2003
Pull the cork and you will find written on it:
bogle [n.][Scottish origin]
A friendly spirit;
This haunting bottle from California has a beautiful, black, ethereal label and an intense red blend inside it. Aged 20 months in American Oak, it is made from an uncommon mix of 59% Petite Sirah, 39% Zinfadel, and 2% Mourvedre. It retails for around $16.
This is big structured wine. It is purple-red in color and has a nose of strawberry/blackberry. There is quite a bit of heat on the finish, but not enough to make it unapproachable. I know I often shy away from wines when I read reviews that indicate "heat," so let me be clear. It really isn't too much of a detriment to the wine. The wine also attacks the palate with tremendous acidity and will benefit from aging.
The flavors that haunt this wine are cherry, eucalyptus and wine barrel planter pot. If you've ever been to a garden store where they sell old wine barrels as planters, you know what I'm talking about. It is the taste of that delicious must from wine soaked wood. Since this wine is young, I let it sit out overnight without the cork and tasted it again the next day. After about 12 hours, it had really opened up and a lot of the heat went away. I could also cleary taste a hint of cinnamon on the finish which was absent the previous day.
SCORE & RECOMMENDATION:
This is a terrific effort although I held back my score a bit because this is a young wine. This could very well be a 90 point wine with a few years of cellaring, but you never know how a wine will develop in the bottle. I also know that most people will buy a wine like this and drink it right away. For a wine that was nearly 60% Petite Sirah, I was a bit disappointed it wasn't more inky in color. This wine deserves more than a ghost of a chance, but it needs a year or two to mellow out.